vrijdag 10 juni 2011

The balance of letting go

Often people say to just let go, and yes many things are easier when you can leave them be for a while. I’ve noticed that sometimes, giving a certain feeling (and thoughts) a place to rest, while focusing on other things, helps putting it into perspective. Though this also feels slightly off for me, putting something away that wants to be felt and thought about.

With lovesickness especially, I found this balance hard to keep. Usually when the feelings were triggered, I just had to give in to them and let the tears flow for a moment (which is probably best). Yet also I noticed that at some point I was making the sadness, dread and emptiness worse by thinking about it too much, I think that’s a challenge: to experience an emotion, but not make it bigger with your mind.

But letting go can mean something more than an emotion. We humans are conditioned to put matters in a certain perspective, we really like to look at things through a frame, so we can have expectations and through that, exercise some control. We are truly a bunch of control freaks put together when you think of it that way. I had a nice first kiss with someone a few days back, but one of the first things going through my mind afterwards was “What did he mean with that? Was it just a kiss for fun, did he feel butterflies, for how long has he or she felt this?" With these questions came worries: “What if he wants more out of this than me? Should I say something? What will he think?”. All of this was despite that I felt pretty sure that we weren’t being serious at all.

To stop trying to control what happens, and go with the flow would probably be a much nicer way to spend my day. I have experienced that when you are able to (to some extent) remove the frame and really be in this moment, you can take in so much more, enjoy life so much more! Yet exercising a small amount of control seems like not so bad a thing. It’s often wise to avoid certain topics of conversation, or think about the way that you phrase something. It seems that here too, is a balance to be kept.

Now that I write this, I realize again that there’s a difference between thinking ahead (which is useful) and worrying (which only brings you down). So I think it's good self-advice to let go of things that don’t do much for me except bring me down. It takes quite a bit of courage to actually do that, especially for a control freak like me. But deep down I know that it’s right, I just shouldn’t take it too far, where I detach myself from the world. For the past half year I’ve been doing lots of self-reflecting. And though hard at times, I feel that it's working. I feel myself becoming stronger, able to keep my focus for longer, able to keep myself calm, worrying less and less.

At the moment what I'm working on is taking action, for I find it really hard to start working on something after having thought up what to do. While I am figuring out this issue, it grows stronger (usually something has to get worse before it gets better), so right now I’m procrastinating way way, wáy too much. But I do trust that I will resolve much of this in the following few moths (maybe even weeks). Hooray for positivity!

- Marleen.

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